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Facebook Looking to Hire Journalists for Curated News Section

Facebook is looking to assemble a small team of journalists to help curate a news tab within its app. The team of 10 media professionals will complement algorithmic curation, and highlight the top stories of the day, according to a New York Times report.

“We are building a new surface for news that will give more visibility to the journalism of news publishers,” the company wrote in a job listing for these new positions Tuesday. “We’re looking for experienced journalists to help identify the top stories from news organizations. The ideal candidate will have sound news judgment, and a passion for breaking news.”

Facebook has struggled with news curation in the past. The company laid off a first set of human news curators after facing bias allegations in 2016, and shuttered a list of trending topics 2 years later.

The company also moved to deemphasize news in its news feed in 2018 to steer users away from sharing viral clickbait — a measure that resulted in a 20% drop of news content shown to its users, according to numbers shared by Facebook executives at the time.

In April, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg first committed to the launch of a dedicated news section during a conversation with Springer CEO Mathias Doepfner. At the time, he also suggested that the company had plans to help publishers not only surface, but also monetize their content. “There is a real opportunity to have better monetization for publishers than we have today at news feed,” he said.

The company has reportedly since been talking to news publishers about paying for some of their content. The New York Times reported earlier this month that it has been in conversations with publications like the Times as well as the Washington Post and the Wall Street Journal about licensing deals that could possibly be worth millions of dollars.

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